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Saturday, August 2, 2014

See How Hackers Could Make Your Car Go Nuts! [Video]

A recent report obtained by CNN Money shows how hackers can take control of a moving vehicle. A couple of security researchers, Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek, did an analysis on various car models found on today's roads. They even identified which cars were more hackable than others. Details are below the break.

Miller and Valasek didn't actually remotely hack any of the cars. They used hardwires to connect to the cars' computer system and control various functions like brakes and the steering wheel.

According to their report, the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, 2015 Cadillac Escalade and 2014 Toyota Prius were the most 'hackable' of 20 car models reviewed. The 2014 Dodge Viper and 2014 Audi A8 were the least hackable.

The researchers emphasized that their goal was to show which vehicles would be seen as an easy hack and to get automakers more aware of the security risks involved with hacking.

The 2014 Jeep Cherokee and 2015 Escalade have an inherent security flaw where the cars' apps, Bluetooth and telematics which connect the car to a cellular network like OnStar, are on the same network as the engine controls, steering, brakes and tire pressure monitor system.

On the other hand, the 2014 Prius has the radio and Bluetooth on the same network as the steering, brakes and tire pressure monitor.

This becomes an issue because these networks could provide a window of opportunity for hackers to exploit. Controlling vital car functions like the steering wheel and brakes can put drivers at high risk.

Here are a couple of videos from IOActive demonstrating these hacks...

In response to the report, Toyota issued a statement that said hacks demonstrated in the report were possible only with a wired connection inside the car and taking apart the instrument panel. So this wasn't essentially an issue to be worried about.

A spokesman for Cadillac said, "the report does not mention many new security features and mechanisms installed in the Escalade, and its description of the vehicle's electronic system is not fully accurate."

Chrysler responded by saying that their vehicles are equipped with security systems that help minimize the risk from real-world threats.

Check out CNN Money's conversation with Miller and Valasek by clicking here.

Source: CNN Money
Image & Videos' source: IOActive (YouTube)

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